Who was Magnus Nicholls?

This juggler is named for one of the greatest - and most intriguing - jugglers who ever lived, Magnus Nicholls, born 1895.

Most of what is known about him today is rumor; the rumors even purport to explain his obscurity. One has it that a juggling historian, miffed that Magnus' son did not pay for a dinner, removed all references from his work. Many other rumors relate it to a long-running feud between him and Enrico Rastelli, who was apparently initially inspired by Magnus to seek ultimate technical mastery.

Magnus may have been the first to juggle five clubs, and is claimed to have multiplexed 11 balls. He was widely rumored to have acquired his skills in a pact with Satan, and was burned in effigy outside theaters. In one run of performances for which ticket sales were slow, the theater manager requested that the tickets be made cheaper. Magnus demanded that prices rather be doubled, and the ensuing interest taken by the newspapers led to the rest of the shows selling out.

Many more colorful stories - of which most must surely be false - of his exploits are available at the Juggling Information Service.

  • Rastelli inspired by Nicholls
  • Ticket story, Satan, privacy, aldultery, historian
  • Physical description, local editorials
  • Flame
  • Practicing without props
  • Teaching the King to juggle
  • No pictures
  • Ancient IJA film of Magnus imitator
  • Moving to contact juggling
  • Rastelli got him removed?
  • Peg leg trick
  • Some of the record set straight by Magnus' grandson
  • Stringless diabolo
  • All hypnotism?
  • The Diabolic 'M' - Magnus?
  • Nasty Rastelli feud story
  • Where to find a picture